EC Preps



By Adam Paul

In what was supposed to be a magical night out in La Mesa as it was homecoming at Grossmont High as the Hillers took on the Eastlake Titans who traveled from the South Bay looking to spoil the evening.

Both teams came into the contest highly rated in San Diego County and off victories with Grossmont defeating Hilltop 64-3 and Eastlake on the road falling to a really good Santiago team 43-41.

With this in mind in front of a great crowd, it was a game from the beginning as both ball clubs held one another on the first possession. Defensively for the Foothillers on the Titans first possession Julian Sanderlin was able to push his way in the back field and sack Titans quarterback Daniel Amon twice.

The Hillers were able to get the ball via punt but unfortunately Jamie Odom threw a ball that was picked off by Mauricio Lopez of Eastlake. Once again the Grossmont defense did its job as Eastlake marched down to the Hillers twenty yard line and lined up for a would be 37-yard field goal. Grossmont’s Zach Jones was able to penetrate the line and get his paws up and block the kick in which there was a scramble for the ball. In the ensuing mad dash for the ball, Andrew Lira of Grossmont picked it up and thanks to a great block from Noah Cress was able to take it to the house for the early 6-0 lead as the ensuing extra point was no good.

The other offense for the Hillers came via an 84-yard touchdown strike from Odom to Desmond Carter who was able to break a tackle after catching the ball about thirty yards downfield and streaked his way to the end zone, and also a 65-yard score to Thomas Magnum to give them a 19-10 lead.

Eastlake offensively couldn’t push the ball into the end zone and had to settle for a field goal to pull within 19-13. The defense once again would come up big as with just under a minute left in the first half AJ Hernandez would pickoff Odom at the 50-yardline and take it down to the Grossmont 34-yardline.

From there the Titans were back in business and were able to get down to the 10-yardline. Without any timeouts the Titans had to scramble to get the field goal unit out and as time expired they would boot a 27-yarder to pull within 19-16 at the half.

This was the momentum that the Titans would need as they completely shutout the Foothillers offense in the second half 16-0.

Offensively for the Hillers Odom finished 10 of 25 passing for 248 yards and two TDs but was picked off 5 times.

SCORE: Eastlake 32, Grossmont 19

Records: Eastlake (3-1), Grossmont (2-2)

KEY STATS: Bernard Coe of the Titans ran for 155 yards on 31 carries against a staunch Hillers defense. Overall the Titans gained 355 yards compared to the Foothillers 273 yards.

PIVOTAL MOMENT: Just right before half with the clock winding down the Titans made a mad scramble to get the field goal unit onto the field. With the clock ready to expire they barely got the 27-yard kickoff. The made field goal pulled them within 19-16 at the break.

Quotable I: “We knew they were a high-potent offense,” Eastlake head coach Tropp said. “Getting six picks helped and also the fact that we shut them out in the second half.”

Quotable II: “This is why we play a tough schedule so that we are able to understand where we are at.” Said Foothillers Head coach Tom Karlo when asked about the game. “We have a lot of young guys but we will be fine and we will correct the mistakes.”

Quotable III: “What hurts is not capitalizing in the second half by making the big plays and also you can’t win games with the turnovers like we had tonight.” Said Karlo

Notes: The Titans defense on the evening had a total of six interceptions which either ties or is a new school record. Both teams combined for eight quarterback sacks including two by Grossmont’s Julian Sanderlin who also had 13 tackles. Others for the Hillers to have sacks were Daisean Crawford, Eric Shanks and Jones. Grossmont came into the contest averaging almost 40 points a game and 440 yards on offense. Micha Pietila-Wiggins had two interceptions on the night for Eastlake.

For the Foothillers Thomas Magnum finished with four catches for 117 yards and a score. Carter hauled in three passes for 113 yards and a score. Shevell Sterling was limited to 31 yards on the ground while also catching a couple balls for 15 yards.


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